Empowering Alternative Learning School Learners through Science and Livelihood
My goal is to help a number of alternative learning school (ALS) students and teach them different science experiments which they can enjoy, at the same time, earn from. ALS students are out of school youth who cannot proceed to college because of financial constraints. Most of them are laborers, house helpers and even young mothers. They cannot attend a formal school during weekdays since they need to work.
$200 to help 60 ALS students. The amount will be used to buy materials for the workshop teaching the students how to make ice cream and train them to get the needed resources to start a business. We will use inexpensive, locally available and easily found materials. Flavors that appeal to the local population will also be explored.
Date and Location of Program
Science Experiments as livelihood projects
The Philippine Education nowadays is facing a big challenge. Just last 2010, the government implemented the K-12 program wherein high school education is extended for two more years calling it the senior high school (grade 11 & 12). The Philippines is one among the few countries who only have four years of high school education. Enrollees this year are the first batch of students who are affected of the additional senior high school. Before entering college or the university, the high school freshmen will have to wait for six years although parents are already struggling to send their children to high school even for four years.
The K-12 program aims to produce students who are competent and skilled when they finish high school. Adding two more years might be a burden but it has a long term effect and as a science educator, I want to help produce students who are competent and skilled. Our greatest challenge as a science educator in the Philippines is that we lack resources and materials for us to teach students science experiments. Good thing Pueblo Science responded to the need of developing countries such as the Philippines in raising awareness towards science literacy by conducting science teachers’ camps. I am one of those fortunate teachers who learned a lot from the camp. Through this camp, I was able to conduct fun and engaging science experiments using readily available materials. I am proud to say that after attending the camp and using the experiments that I learned, I became a more effective teacher. One of the evidence that I can provide is when my student became an entrepreneur. To help her parents in their finances, she thought of selling ice cream in the school after we had our Ice cream making experiment. My student got more interested and experimented on how to make different flavors of ice cream. She even got interested in taking a science related course in college.
Every year, I see to it that I attend Pueblo Science Teachers Camp. Then, share all the things that I learn to my fellow teachers in the school. Last September 2015 during our Math and Science Fair at school, I integrated the different science experiments I have learned in the Pueblo Science Teacher’s Camp.
To pursue my passion and to become a more competent and effective teacher, I enrolled again to finish my masters course in Science Teaching. I was not able to finish it because my scholarship grant was cut due to lack of government fund. This year, I was able to save some money so I decided to continue and am determined to finish it hopefully. One of the subjects in this course is Managing Out-of School Science Activities. The final requirement of this subject is to conduct an immersion activity in a community. Two of my classmates are teachers for the Alternative Learning System (ALS) program. They said that their students really need help. They are out of school youth who cannot proceed to college because of financial constraints. Most of them are laborers, house helpers and even young mothers. They cannot attend a formal school during weekdays since they need to work. We decided to come up with activities suited to their needs. With my background in Pueblo Science Teacher’s Camp and my experiences in using the experiments in my own class, I suggested that we teach the Ice Cream Making experiment to the ALS students but during the planning, my classmates were hesitant to pursue this since it needs a lot of budget to buy the materials needed. So I came up with the idea of splitting the class into groups and each group would bring their own ingredients and materials. Finally, we came up with the idea of turning Science experiments into a livelihood. We want them to learn science experiments and at the same time earn money from what they have learned. The immersion activity was a success. Most of the students said that it was their first time to have that kind of experience. For me, it was an eye opener. A lot of ALS students need this kind of activity. My goal this school year is to help another batch of ALS students and teach them different science experiments which they can enjoy, at the same time, earn from. To do this, I need help in raising funds to buy the materials needed for this project to happen.
Who Am I?
I am Cristina A. Pusta, a high school science teacher and basic education coordinator of Brokenshire College Toril in Davao City, Philippines. I am one of those fortunate teachers who attended the Pueblo Science Teacher’s Camp. I was inspired by the organization to teach science experiments using readily available materials found in our local community. I believe in the advocacy of the RISE program increasing science literacy which can help the nation’s economic and environmental improvement.
Currently, I’m finishing my Master’s in Teaching Science Major in Biological Science at the University of Southeastern Philippines. While Studying, I am also developing board games for chemistry and biology classes which I think can help in the future science teacher’s camp.
Where Your Donation Goes
|Cost ($)||Quantity||Total ($)|
|Fulfillment labor & materials||30||1||30|
|Total Project Cost||$ 200|
The 60 ALS students who will benefit from the project will be able to create additional income to support their families, including children. In addition the educational part of the activity also allows the students to
- learn that science can be experiential, fun, and applicable to everyday life.
- possibly share and teach their experiments to their friends and classmates